House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) pours a little Tabasco hot sauce on the ball before throwing out the first pitch as his son Harrison looks on at an NCAA baseball game between the University of Louisiana at Lafayette and Wright State Friday, February 23, 2018, at M.L. "Tigue" Moore Field at Russo Park in Lafayette, La.

Dan Fagan's column in The Advocate's edition of Jan. 8 decries the silence of Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez in regard to some of her followers making threatening tweets about Steve Scalise. A quick question: how did Steve Scalise respond to arch-Trumpist Ted Nugent's frequently made, violence-laden comments about Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton? He didn't.

Dan Fagan: Extremists threaten Scalise with shooting references; Ocasio-Cortez fails to condemn it

Apparently, because she calls herself a Democratic-Socialist, Cortez has become a favorite target of conservatives. In typical knee-jerk fashion, Fagan conflates democratic socialism with pure socialism. He tries to use Venezuela as his example of democratic socialism, which is way off base. A more appropriate example (the one used by Cortez, Bernie Sanders, and others) would be any of the Nordic countries of Finland, Norway, or Sweden. These countries regularly rate highest in the world in terms of health, happiness, and citizens' approval of how their governments work.

This explains why citizens of those countries don't pursue immigration to America. Those countries guarantee food, housing, health care, and education to their people. The lack of great income inequality figures prominently in their contentment. Unfettered capitalism creates the divisions that we find in America today.

On the same editorial page, cartoonist Lisa Benson depicts an image Cortez picking the pocket of a regular, everyday taxpayer. That, too, completely misrepresents Cortez's approach. A more accurate image would show her taking the wheels off Donald Trump's or Jeff Bezos' limousines.

John Kennedy

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